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HOME> Expert Assessments>Hazards Outlook

U.S. Hazards Outlook - Made April 20, 2018

 Days 3-7Days 8-14Probabilistic Days 8-14
Precipitation No HazardsNo Hazards
TemperatureNo HazardsNo Hazards
SoilsNot Available
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Categorical Outlooks
Experimental Probabilistic Outlooks (Information)

Valid Monday April 23, 2018 to Friday May 04, 2018

US Hazards Outlook
NWS Climate Prediction Center College Park MD
300 PM EDT April 20 2018

Synopsis: The 3-7 day period is likely to begin with mid-level low pressure over the Southeast, supporting a strong storm system which is forecast to impact the East Coast. The temperature patterns in Week-2 are expected to become more moderate compared to past few weeks. Mid -level high pressure is likely over much of the CONUS, minimizing chances for high impact events. Two surface low pressure systems are expected to impact the Aleutians and southern coast of Alaska, leading to a fairly active 3-7 day period for the region. Mid-level low pressure is forecast to weaken over Alaska for Week-2.

Hazards Detailed Summary

For Monday April 23 - Friday April 27: At the beginning of this period, a strong low pressure system will be moving northward out of the Southeast along the East Coast, after impacting the lower Mississippi Valley prior to this period. Heavy rain (greater than 1.5 inch in 24 hours) is forecast along the Southeast and into the Mid-Atlantic for Apr 23-24, with the southern Appalachians most likely to receive up to 4 inches. Model guidance shows this system tracking along the coast longer than previously expected, so the affected area reaches further north than in prior forecasts. Coastal regions are also forecast to experience high winds (greater than 30 knots), Apr 23-24. A second storm system is expected to move southeastward out of the Great Lakes region immediately after, possibly bringing more rain to the Mid-Atlantic; however, rainfall totals for that system are likely to remain below 1 inch.

The rest of the period looks relatively quiet for the majority of the lower 48. A frontal system is likely to move over the central U.S. during the beginning of the period, though all impacts from the system are forecast to remain below hazardous criteria at this time. Surface high pressure moving southward from Canada is expected result in a drier pattern for much of the central and eastern CONUS.

Mid-level troughing is forecast to move over Alaska during the 3-7 day period, likely supporting an unsettled pattern for the region. At the beginning of the period, surface low pressure in the Gulf of Alaska is forecast to bring heavy precipitation (greater than 2 inches per 24 hours) on Apr 23-24 to the southeastern Alaska coast and parts of the Panhandle. Most of this precipitation is expected to fall as rain, though snow is possible for areas at higher elevations. High winds are expected to accompany the heavy precipitation along the coast for Apr 23. The other strong surface low pressure system (976 hPa) in the Bering Sea is forecast to move eastward across the Aleutians and parts of mainland Alaska. The Aleutians are likely to experience high winds and significant wave heights (exceeding 20 feet) as the system moves through, Apr 23-25.

For Saturday April 28 - Friday May 04: Mid-level ridging and a more zonal pattern limit the risk of in high impact events for the lower 48 in Week-2. Model guidance does show agreement in a closed low pressure system moving inland from the western coast toward the middle of Week-2, which could cause some unsettled patterns for the western half of the US. However, spread in ensemble members between the GFS and ECMWF shows uncertainty of the placement of this system as it tracks across the CONUS, precluding a forecast for any associated hazards at this time.

The mid-level pattern is expected to deamplify for Week-2 over Alaska, leading to less storminess for the region. No hazards are currently posted for Week-2 in Alaska.

The US Drought Monitor, valid on April 17, shows a 1 class improvement in drought coverage over the Northern Plains. There was degradation in drought conditions over parts of the Four Corners Region. Overall, the severe drought coverage during the past week has slightly decreased to 16.33% from 16.69% last week.

Forecaster: Christina Finan


Click here to see a display of the GFS Ensemble Forecasts

Please consult local NWS Forecast Offices for short range forecasts and region-specific information.